SD-15: Roll it again

I really can’t be effusive enough about my respect and admiration for John Laird.  So, I was a bit disappointed to see Sam Blakeslee top the first round of voting.  And he is frightfully close to the magic 50%. Right now he’s sitting on 49.7% of the vote with all precincts reporting.  

Assuming that holds up we will have a run-off. With exactly the same candidates. Yes, you read that right. Because in special elections, every party leader goes to the general election, we’ll be seeing the same four candidates in the race. And turnout will be exceedingly low again.

So, in the next three months, we’ll need to work harder to claw back those 10,000 votes and turn out our voters.  Surely if we would consolidate this election with the general election, like it should be, we would be in a solid position come November.  However, Arnold chose to waste the money for another special election, so we will need to work ever harder to push John Laird over the top.

15 thoughts on “SD-15: Roll it again”

  1. Blakeslee is not giving up.  He is about 450 votes shy of the magic 50% mark and there are at least 4000 provisional ballots here in SLO.  I don’t know about the other counties.  

    The other thing has to do with JOBSPAC.  On May 22nd, they had about $500,000 cash on hand.  Between May 22 and June 22 they (and their affiliates) spent about $1 million on the race.  Do they have the cash to do it again?  We tend to think that they have an unlimited fountain of money, but they have their problems and they have other priorities.

    Without a sustained barrage of negative ads, can Blakeslee keep back Laird?  I doubt it.  Of course, I would rather be in Blakeslee’s position (just a few hundred votes shy of victory) than Laird’s position, but this is definately doable.  We need to build on what we achieved yesterday.

  2. I’m a Democrat living in San Mateo County; I work full time but don’t have money I can donate. I used to live in Santa Cruz and would support Laird for just about anything.

    How can I help him win in August?

  3. if nobody gets 50% in August either?  Indefinite runoffs till the end of time??  Do it again in November?

  4. I think most of the August 17 turnout will come from people who voted yesterday. A strong enough voter contact campaign could turn enough Independent/Lib and even GOP votes toward Laird.

    The Big Oil issue is a monster, but people won’t believe the ads until somebody sells them face to face.

    When I say enough, I mean enough to get close enough (within 4 points or so) that a stupendous gotv could win for the Dems.

    This Exxon guy is a human tarball. Let’s go get him.

  5. I ran phone banks in Santa Cruz for 3 weeks before the special election. This is what we heard:

    People were confused about the election and either thought it was a duplicate ballot from the just-finished primary, or didn’t know where to vote on June 22.

    Not enough people knew who Laird was. Even in areas he already represented, his name recognition was surprisingly low. Some people I talked to said they’d vote for him because he was the only Democrat, but still didn’t seem to know him.

    The attack ads worked. I talked to people who believed them and didn’t know who was behind them and paying for them. There were some good pieces that exposed the big-money connection like the YouTube video by the League of Conservation Voters. But the viewership for this was poor and it never did achieve the viral status it deserved and needed. Same goes for some of the independent sites out there.

    Laird staff worked incredibly hard. Union volunteers were awesome. Planned Parenthood sponsored phone banks all over, as did OFA and DFA. The CDP did a lot. But, outside of Monterey County, I saw little support from county Democratic parties in the Northern part of the district (I don’t know about the south). They could have, and need to do more before the August election.

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